Contact person: Hanske Mulder
Coordinating organisation: Amsterdam and De Glind Voluntary Year
Host: Oudezijds 100: http://www.oudezijds100.nl
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
The Oudezijds 100 community was founded in 1955 and is a community where people pray, live and work together. In the red-light district of Amsterdam, this community opens its doors to share the care for each other, regardless of people’s social, economic, cultural or religious background. Oudezijds 100 offers help to those on the fringe of society, such as homeless people, (ex)addicts and people with financial problems. Oudezijds 100 shelters them, shares its life with them and helps them to live and function independently again in society. The community offers different forms of guidance and support:
• help through social work
• medical care for those who are not insured (homeless people, asylum seekers)
• guidance in living responsibly and independently
The community currently consists of about 60 people, from 15 different countries. They live in different buildings on the Oudezijds Achter- en Voorburgwal. Oudezijds 100 also owns its own outdoor centre, called Maria ter Claesze. Maria ter Claesze is a small farm on the Dutch countryside.
Oudezijds 100 has professional staff, consisting of social workers, doctors, nurses, lawyers, an accountant, psychologist, theologians. In principle, all professional staff is unpaid (i.e. works on a voluntary basis).
Volunteers help out with all kinds of activities, from cooking dinner to picking up the phone to looking after the small children or helping with maintence within the community. Cleaning, laundry and helping out with all practical things to keep the community running is an important part of your tasks. This means that you mostly work within the community.
Oudezijds 100 is located in the historical city centre of Amsterdam, in the red light district (De Wallen in Dutch). The red light district attracts all kinds of different people. In the midst of this area Oudezijds 100 is a safe place for everyone who needs it.
The volunteer will live at one of the community buildings in Amsterdam and will have his/her own room. The kitchen, living room, toilets and bathrooms are shared with the other community members. Amsterdam offers a huge variety of cultural events, sport facilities and opportunities to go shopping or sightseeing. The volunteer’s supervisor and mentor can guide the volunteer in finding free time activities. In the Netherlands, it is common to cycle everywhere, as a volunteer you get a bike.
Oudezijds 100 offers volunteers a variety of service and learning opportunities. These include: – developing new capacities and skills, in particular with regard to working with people in special situations (listening, being patient, being hospitable, organising & coordinating activities etc.) – learning to live together in a community with people from many different cultural, social, religious and economic backgrounds – gaining insight into the Dutch welfare system – becoming more aware of Oudezijds 100’s approach to inclusive, sustainable living and fair chances for all – spiritual development – personal growth The volunteer will be a full member of the community, with his/her own tasks and responsibilities. These tasks and responsibilities will be adjusted to match the volunteer’s experience & skills, age and language skills. The community expects the volunteer to take his/her service seriously. The volunteer will be part of a larger group of other volunteers who work at Oudezijds. The volunteer is guided in his/her work by a professional member of staff or a more experienced volunteer and has regular supervision meetings with the community coordinator. To give an idea of the work here a short description of an average working week of a volunteer: – Working in the day nursery of the community; playing and doing activities with the children (1-5 years) – Working at the reception to get in contact with people in crisis situations, to inform people about the community and give them advice; pick up the phone and tell people about the work of the centre – Household chores (cooking, cleaning etc.) – Taking part in group activities of the community (sharing meals, morning & evening prayer, community retreats, free time activities etc.) – Giving personal attention to the people whom Oudezijds 100 provides shelter to: listening and talking to them, doing activities, go out etc. Other activities will be planned according to the wishes, experiences and the skills of the volunteers. Previous volunteers, for example, gave individual la nguage lessons to prostitutes or became a ‘buddy’ for a new guest in the community. Usually the volunteer works from Monday till Friday, approx. 36 hours per week. On Saturdays and Sundays the volunteer is off. Sometimes the volunteer might work at the weekends, but you get 2 days off during the week.
Living and working in Oudezijds 100 Living and working together as a Christian community is an important part of the volunteer experience at Oudezijds 100. We therefore ask of the volunteer to be an active part of the community during his/her service. This includes doing household chores (going shopping, cleaning up after meals, cooking etc.) and attending community activities. The volunteer needs to be willing to spend part of his/her free time with the community. As mentioned above Oudezijds 100 is a Christian community, which has been inspired by many different ways of believing. The volunteer does not have to be Christian him/herself, but we expect to volunteer to be open to faith-related matters. The volunteer is expected to attend (and sometimes prepare) morning & evening prayer and other faith-related activities of the community
When interested please fill in the application form that you can find below at this page and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also for questions you can email Hanske Mulder at this emailadres.